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  • Fuori dal giorno

    Fuori dal giorno

    ★★★

    Intriguing super-low-budget time capsule of early ‘80s Rome that follows 24 hours in the life of an aspiring filmmaker and small-time coke dealer played by Sebastiane's Leonardo Treviglio. Writer-director Paolo Bologna—who doesn’t seem to have had the resources to define a central conflict—gets some mileage out of the contrast between the clichés of the work-in-progress film-within-the-film (in which our anti-hero also plays a drug dealer) and the drab reality of selling coke to sweaty Italian yuppies and getting screwed over…

  • The Phantom of the Opera

    The Phantom of the Opera

    ★★½

    Fisher’s fetishization of close-ups, cuts, and theater presages Argento and his ilk, but otherwise this begs for a personality on the level of Peter Cushing or Christopher Lee. (Or Cary Grant, who was at one point attached to star in this thing—though, sadly, not as the Phantom.) Instead, we get Herbert Lom in a papier-mâché mask, Michael Gough as the sniveling villain, way too many scenes from a wretched opera about Joan of Arc, and a silent, murderous sidekick whose presence the movie stubbornly refuses to explain.

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  • The Immigrant

    The Immigrant

    ★★★★★

    No one's written the Great American Novel yet, but James Gray went ahead and made a movie out of it anyway.

  • Star Wars: The Last Jedi

    Star Wars: The Last Jedi

    ★★★½

    About as idiosyncratic, stylized, and wacky as these things are likely to get. Johnson really doubles down on the the original’s Kurosawa influences (lotta rain, cinders, and chanbara-style sword fighting here) and the hoodoo mysticism of the Force. (There are points where this almost threatens to turn into “John Boorman’s Star Wars.”) The action scenes—both of the Star Destroyer and light saber varieties—are some of the best in the series.